Hamid Ghassemi, who was under death row in Iran's Evin prison for 4 years, has been released on September 24 and returned to Canada on October 10. Following Hamid’s return, two jailed Canadians in Egypt Dr. Tarek Loubtani and John Greyson returned on October 11.
October 14, 2013
The International Center for Human Rights in Canada (ICHR): Iranian-Canadian Hamid Ghassemi-Shall has been released from Iran’s Evin prison on September 24, 2013 and returned to Canada on Thursday October 10 after five years of imprisonment and with an execution order on his life. Following Hamid’s return, two jailed Canadians in Egypt Dr. Tarek Loubtani and Filmmaker John Greyson returned to Canada on October 11.
Hamid Ghassemi-Shall was greeted by his wife, Antonella Mega, friends and group of human rights defenders including members and volunteers of Amnesty International and ICHR at Toronto International airport on Thursday October 10.
ICHR welcomes three Canadian’s safe return to Canada from Iran and Egypt.
“Hamid’s release after five years is a result of international pressure and human rights work,” Said Ardeshir Zarezadeh, ICHR’s director. He added that “This is how we should deal with dictators to release innocent prisoners, serious and strong language could lead to his freedom long time ago.”
Hamid Ghassemi-Shall was arrested on May 24, 2008 while visiting his elderly mother in Iran. His older brother, Alborz Ghassemi-Shall, had been arrested two weeks earlier. Hamid was arrested after going to follow-up his brother’s case at court. Both brothers were held in solitary confinement illegally and under torture in Tehran’s Evin prison for almost 18 months and convicted of espionage and sentenced to death in December 2008 at an unfair trial by a Revolutionary Court.
In January 2010, Alborz Ghassemi-Shall, died in prison from stomach cancer.
ICHR and other human rights organizations campaigned for Hamid’s release and organized protests. Also Amnesty International launched a campaign on behalf of Ghasemi-Shall and had a major role in raising his voice. Later, Canadian Parliament members and government officials added their voice and called for Hamid’s release.
Dr. Tarek Loubtani and Filmmaker John Greyson were detained on August 16th, 2013 on charges of “violence”, “inciting violence” and “carrying weapons”, as well as “destroying public property” during violence in Cairo.
ICHR had written to Egyptian officials for their release and fair trial. Egyptian authorities have detained many Egyptians during protests in Egypt. ICHR will continue o urge Egyptian authorities to follow international human rights law in the treatment of all detained protesters.
For further information please contact ICHR at 1-888-908-7317.